Left Hand Brewery out of Longmont, CO turned a quarter century old this year and to celebrate they’ve released their 25th Anniversary Imperial Stout. Weighing in at 12.1% ABV, this is Left Hand’s heaviest beer to date as well as one of the most modestly crafted having been made with only a few basic ingredients. On the nose there’s no hiding this stouts imperial nature but beneath the heat lies a chocolate pool of sweet dark fruits and bitter coffee beans accented by subtler notes of licorice and roasted nuttiness. Pronounced flavors of sweet chocolate and fruits like plum and cherry subdue any alcohol heat upfront with the help of rolled oats that cushion the otherwise intense mouthfeel. Near the finish, more bitter flavors of espresso, baker’s chocolate, and toffee leave the taste buds with a roasted tinge and slight imperial warmth. Not cripplingly rich in flavor or searing with alcohol heat, this stout’s profile remains sapid and proper throughout every sip. Come pick up a 4-pack of Left Hand Brewery’s 25th Anniversary Stout while it’s still around. Cheers!
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